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Athens is one of the few places in the world one can take one step into Classical Greece, another into Roman times, and a third back into the present. Vacationers have traveled to Athens since antiquity – and stayed for the vibrant culture and trendy, friendly company. There are countless sights to see, from the Acropolis to the astounding National Archaeological Museum to the modern Olympic Stadium.
Stay in the heart of Athens in charming Plaka, surrounded by the many souvenir shops and tavernas right near the Acropolis. Perfect for both families and couples, here you’re close to the Acropoli and Monastiraki metro stations for lines to the airport, ferry port, and spectacular National Archaeological Museum- a definite must-see even for non-historians. Outside this area are many downtown hotels and apartments within walking distance of Syntagma Square, the shopping district, and the hotspots of Greek tourism, many offering stunning views of the Acropolis from their rooftop restaurants and bars. There are also several comfortable and modern hotels near Athens’ airport and Piraeus for jetsetters and short stays.
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Attractions and Sightseeing tour in Athens
There are both the modern and the ancient Athens cultures to divest your time. The first stop on your list should be the Acropolis to visit the Parthenon, and Erectheion-though during the morning and with sunscreen. This 5th century BC spot on a hilltop is the main attraction, plus those magnificent views of Athens and many postcard-worthy photographs. On your way down see Odeon of Herodes Atticus, a stone theatre completed in 161 AD; which today is used as a venue for musical festivals with past performers like Elton John and tenor Andrea Bocelli.
Stroll through Plaka, a picturesque area of Athens built on the slopes of the Acropolis. Here one can step back in time and see old white washed houses, mansions and narrow winding streets overlooking Athens. Plaka has modern Greek restaurants and vendors too, plus plenty of shops for souvenir hunters. Wander through streets for the Roman Agora, Temple of Olympian Zeus and Panathenean Ancient Stadium, also known as the Kalimarmaron Stadium and the site of the first modern Olympic Games held in 1869.
Stroll right up to the present to the Greek Parliament building in Syntagma Square and watch the changing of the guards. Nearby, wander through the Museum of Cycladic Art boasting the world’s largest collection of art from the island group that includes Mykonos, Milos and Siros To unwind from all the sightseeing of Athens take a leisurely stroll at the National Gardens, which has Cypress, pine and palm trees to shade trails that weave around brooks and ponds.
For something completely different, watch a movie at the Thiseion Cinema, an open air movie house located on the south side of the Acropolis; classic Hollywood flicks are projected onto a wall. The nightlife in Athens is abundant as is the Greek cuisine. The Gazi district, once the site of the city’s gasworks, has become a hotspot in Athens and is lined with bars, restaurants and cafés. Just about any downtown Athens restaurant that serves dinner on its rooftop will offer an amazing view of the Acropolis lit up at night; remember no need to use your flash!